Councils across the UK are pocketing millions from drivers in Penalty Charge Notices (PCN), new data reveals. The total income made from fines reached more than £326 million in 2018 from nine million PCNs, according to new data obtained by Confused.com. It’s never great to get a fine but it’s even worse thinking you could’ve avoided paying it!
Don’t even get us started on Parking Charge Notices, which aren’t even enforced by the council, and it’s really just an invoice, not a fine!
This includes fines for offences such as:
- Misusing a bus lane or box junction
- Turning left/right illegally.
New research finds that one in four (23%) drivers think fines are issued fairly. It even looks like they may be right, as most appeals to refute these are successful. According to the research, almost half of UK drivers have received a PCN. Of these, two in five argued their case, with most (74%) resulting in paying a reduced fine, or nothing at all. This may go to show that not all fines are issued fairly, and drivers being asked to pay fines they may not be accountable for.
Reasons for refuting PCN fine
Two in three drivers who received a PCN didn’t challenge the fine, with one in eight of these put off by confusing information online about how to appeal. A further one in six also claim they didn’t know how to appeal.
This goes to show that these processes need to be made clearer and easier for drivers who could potentially be forking out fines they know they don’t need to pay. In fact, more than half (52%) claim if they had more clarity about how to appeal a PCN, they’d have challenged an unfair fine. If you’re a fleet driver then you may not be able to delve into the reason for the fine and may miss out on the reduced fee.
What if you’re a fleet driver?
Many commercial drivers may be ordered to pay these fines (depending on company policy) but if the vehicle is registered to the company, they may not receive the fine directly reducing the chances of paying the cheaper option. Check out other ways your driving could cost you by clicking here
Given how much money councils are raking in in fines, it’s no wonder more than a third (36%) of drivers are confused where the money from PCN fines goes. In fact, more than two fifths (42%) believe that councils treat drivers as cash cows when most are just trying to do their job and get it done quickly.
Obviously, we aren’t saying drive around like a lunatic, and then challenge every fine you get – we’re here to promote safe driving!